July 30, 2008
Pox Again!

Yesterday John noticed that Madeline had several red spots on her and took her to the doctor to confirm.....it's the Chicken Pox. Ugh! For a vaccinne that is supposed to be 95 - 97% effective, how is that two of the three kids in my household have gotten the pox. Crazy. The good thing is that with the vaccine, much like Keegan, Madeline is experiencing a very mild case of it. Not too much itching. The doctor started her on Acyclovair yesterday, so we are hoping by the end of the weekend she'll be fine.

Keegan is doing fine. His face has really filled out and I'm not sure if it's that "moon face" that people get when they are on steroids, or if it's just that he's gained most of his weight back. He will go back to CHO next Thursday for his second treatment of Remicade. The GI and infectious disease team at CHO felt it was best to wait another week, just to be safe. Hopefully we will be talking about getting him off the Prednisone, too. You have to taper off, I guess, not just stop.

Sebastian has shown no signs of chicken pox, thank goodness. Now it has been two weeks since they were both exposed to Keegan's pox and I don't think we can safely say Sebastian will be pox free until 2 weeks from now. In the meantime, he is enjoying the rest of his summer. Soon he will go take the entrance/placement exam for high school and we'll start all that fun. Can't believe the summer is almost over.

John and I met with a loan officer yesterday to discuss our options with our housing. This gentleman works with the real estate agent who sold our landlord the house, and confirmed that he may be in trouble with the house. Hopefully we will get confirmation of that soon, so we can figure out what our next step is. In the meantime, the loan officer is going to run all our data and tell us exactly what we need to focus on in order to get into a house the quickest. I hate all things financial and really want this all to be done.

Other than that.....things are moving along. We still haven't been able to meet our lovely new nephew yet. Was hoping to get to Fresno this weekend, but that's not going to happen. Will probably have to wait another full two weeks, to make sure that we are not poxy. Ugh! I've signed up for fall classes already. Limiting myself to just two. Physical Anthropology and Statistics (yes again!). Fun stuff.

Posted by Brie at 10:48 AM
July 22, 2008
All Home Again!

Well, after 4 glorious evenings, they finally released pox boy into the wild. Keegan started taking an oral anti-viral medication on Sunday morning and they wanted to observe him for another 24 hours. Luckily, after the IV anti-virals, the oral medication seems to be working. No new pox! So as of yesterday around 2 PM the Silveria clan was back together. Yippee! All is well in the household, so far. Usual bickering and yelling, but that's normal for us. Don't have much else to report, so I think that is all for now.

Posted by Brie at 08:56 PM
July 17, 2008
WHAT?!?

So I've been blogging how wonderfully Keegan is doing, right. And he really is doing great. Good mood, eating well, gaining weight. All good right? Should be, but low and behold......CHICKEN POX! That's right, ladies and gentlemen, the poor kid now has a wonderful case of chicken pox. Better yet, he was vaccinated for chicken pox as part of the "standard" vaccines. Are you kidding me? First we were told that we could treat this at home with some Acyclovair. Just to be cautious, however, the infectious disease specialist wants Keegan to be treated and monitored at the hospital at least until Sunday.

I'll try to post later to let everyone know the status.

Posted by Brie at 02:03 PM
July 13, 2008
Title? What Title?

Just wanted to post a quick update!

Keegan had his first treatment of Remicade on Thursday. We had to go to the Children's Hospital of Oakland to their outpatient wing. After a little discussion we decided to take Sebastian and Madeline so they could "experience" what Keegan goes through. We thought it would be about 2 or 3 hours. Of course, ended up being 5 hours. What a long day. We got there about 10:30 and talked to the nurse practitioner about all the ins and outs of the treatment. She was really nice and made us feel at ease about our decision to move forward with this treatment. They gave Keegan some Tylenol and Benedryl prior to beginning the infusion. Apparently, the Remicade can cause allergic reactions including itching so they give the Benadryl just in case.

It was really quite eye-opening being there, as we were in the Oncology/Hemotology area. This is where kids also get their chemotherapy treatment. Kids as small as two years old were there getting treatments. I just can't imagine. It really puts things in perspective. Although Keegan has what can be a serious ailment, with Crohn's, it's also completely manageable and treatable. What those other kids and families are going through is just a whole other level. Their courage and positive spirits is just amazing.

So as I said earlier, the whole treatment took about 5 hours. It was a very long time for the other two, so I think they will probably stay home when we go back on the 24th. Just too much for them to keep entertained. We were lucky enough to get a "room" in the treatment area, which was nice. They even fed the kids and gave Keegan a bag of activity stuff to do. So we'll see when we get the 24th what we will do.

So far, there have been no side effects from the Remicade. The steroids, however, are really kicking in. Keegan has a bit of the "moon face" that everyone talks about and has been obsessed with foods of all kind. We went to the farmers market on Saturday and he picked out some great vegetables. It's just so great to not only see him eat, but to see him willing to try so many different types of foods.

Other things going on......

- Brian and his wife, Danelle are preparing to have their first child literally any time now. They are expecting a boy, so by tomorrow I should have a baby nephew! I'm so excited for them!

- We finally got a Wii Fit, after searching high and low. The kids are really utilizing it. I'm hoping that they will continue, even after losing it's "newness." It's a great way for them to get some exercise, which has never been our forte as a family.

- Starting to focus back on getting some of our credit cleaned up so we can secure a loan for a new home. Our landlord has not communicated with us at all about the status of the home, but we know he's in arrears on the house. Getting more and more concerned about where we will end up, but we shall see. Ideally, we will get the loan secured and be in a position to buy our own home here in Tracy.

Think that's about it!

Posted by Brie at 06:09 PM
July 07, 2008
Update from Home!

Just thought I'd post a quick update on the happenings in the Silveria household. First and foremost....Keegan is doing great! He's gained weight, has had a healthy appetite (thanks to the Prednisone) and is in good spirits. He is really participating in the whole "getting better" process. Truth be told, John and I were a bit concerned about this, as Keegan has never been the most agreeable child. Don't get me wrong, he's a great kid, but very stubborn. Comes with the whole "gifted" package.....always thinks he knows the better way to do things. Keegan, however, has been willing to try new food (udon noodles, miso soup, sushi, even the dreaded tomato sauce), takes his many, many pills when needed, and has really had a positive outlook on the whole thing.

Unfortunately, the fun is just beginning. We decided, in consult with our Pediatric GI, to begin K on the more "aggressive" treatment. It's a immune suppressant called Remicade and can only be given intraveneously. So, it's back to the hospital on Thursday to begin his treatment. Recent studies have shown that if you start aggressively, there is a higher chance for a longer remission, which is our ultimate goal. Of course, there are some side effects risks, which are a little scarey, but there are risks with everything, really. I can't see keeping him on steroids long term, as those side effects are even worse. So the Remicade is our road we are going down.

So, what else is going on? Here's a brief summary....

HOME? We've found out that our landlord is behind on the mortgage of the house. Great. Of course found this out, right as Keegan was getting worse. Timing is a wonderful thing. We had just just started looking at our options and, on a whim, decided to apply for a loan for a home. What a great time to buy! We actually got approved, but have a few things to clear up on our credit report (less the $5k!) in order to get the best deal. We'll work over the next few months getting that cleared up and hopefully buy a house, before we are thrown out of this one. :)

MY JOB I was recently promoted to Sr. Manager, HR for my company. I was so excited, it's such a great opportunity for a great company.

SEBASTIAN & MADELINE They are both doing great. They've been real troopers this last month with us focusing on Keegan so much. Sebastian is a great big brother and has taken on more and more responsibilty. Madeline is still the princess and has her "diva" moments, but is just as cheerful and happy as always. They are having a great summer, so far.

Think that's about it!

Posted by Brie at 06:12 PM
July 01, 2008
Update on Keegan

I thought I would update everyone on where we are at with Keegan. We were finally able to bring him home on Sunday night, so after 6 days, he’s home! He had a rather nasty fever Saturday night plus was going to start his Prednisone, so they decided to keep him for observation. Sunday was spent mostly waiting around for the doctors to decide whether or not to release him. He had another round of iron intravenously and slept a little. Finally about four they came in and said we could stay another day and hopefully start the Remicade treatment on Monday or we could go home. We voted home. I was concerned that being there much longer was going to affect his mental state even further, so it was best to go home and schedule the Remicade for later in the week.

Monday was spent catching up with Sebastian and Madeline and we took the family to go see Wall-E in the theatres. We have seen every Pixar film opening weekend since Toy Story, and Keegan wasn’t about to let a little thing like a 6 day hospital stay stop him from going. It was a great movie and everyone had a good time.

Later in the evening, Keegan started having some pretty bad cramping, which could have been brought on by something he ate or drank. It only strengthened both my and John’s belief that our family needs a dietary overhaul. We are going to start to try to make and eat things that more “whole foods” rather then a lot of overly processed junk food. We, like most families these days, are too prone to get fast food or “ready to eat” type foods when we really should be eating simpler food. This will benefit all of us, but especially Keegan. The simpler his diet, the less processing his body will have to do. I just need him to open his mind up a bit about trying new foods to expand his diet choices. That will be the real trick.

Thanks again to all of our family and friends for your positive vibes and thoughts. We really appreciate it. Everyone is pulling for Keegan to get better, so I know he will. Anyone who knows Keegan well knows he’s very stubborn and is not going to let this get him down, especially when he has so much support. Special thanks to my family in Fresno for taking Sebastian and Madeline for a few days. That was such a HUGE relief to know that they were being cared for (and spoiled). They got to swim quite a bit, even with Uncle Brian and Aunt Danelle, and came back with nice looking tans.

It’s Tuesday today and life is slowly getting back to normal. I’m back to work and John and the kids are at home. My work has been incredibly wonderful and supportive during this time, which is great. I have been with this company for over three years now and am so blessed to be working with such great people and friends.

That’s all for now. Hopefully, John and I can continue to update everyone on K’s progress through these blogs, but we are definitely not consistent people!

Posted by Brie at 11:35 AM